Saturday, 10 April 2021

The perfect holiday

Having spent most of my fortnight's leave slogging in the extensive gardens here at Dolores Delargo Towers - just about every pot and trough of perennials and every one of our (surviving) fuschias has been lifted and planted into brand new compost; we've got through at least six bags of the stuff - the weather today is really quite grotty, so I'm having a "rest day" in preparation for the horror looming on Monday, when I'm back to work.

Needless to say, all our dreams are pinned on the vagaries of winning the Lottery, and jetting off to somewhere exotic and fabulously stylish... the company of a (dearly-departed) Dame and her E-Type Jag, perhaps?

Ah, that's better.

[Music: Vast Resources by Jan Kimberly. Original film: Minikillers (1969)]

Soft Tempo Lounge

Friday, 9 April 2021

Come on, come on and join us please

The hardressers are permitted to open next week, and I'll be banging on their door!

My last weekend of freedom beckons, and despite the sad news today, we still need to gee ourselves up for a party...

...and who better to assist than three ladies who have no fear about possessing "big hair" - Thank Disco It's Friday!

Have a great weekend, peeps!

Farewell, the Grand Old Man

RIP, His Royal Highness The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, Earl of Merioneth, Baron Greenwich, Royal Knight of the Most Noble Order of the Garter, Extra Knight of the Most Ancient and Most Noble Order of the Thistle, Member of the Order of Merit, Grand Master and First and Principal Knight Grand Cross of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire, Knight of the Order of Australia, Additional Member of the Order of New Zealand, Extra Companion of the Queen’s Service Order, Royal Chief of the Order of Logohu, Extraordinary Companion of the Order of Canada, Extraordinary Commander of the Order of Military Merit, Lord of Her Majesty’s Most Honourable Privy Council, Privy Councillor of the Queen’s Privy Council for Canada, Personal Aide-de-Camp to Her Majesty, Lord High Admiral of the United Kingdom.

Thursday, 8 April 2021

Totty of the Season

Gregory Peck (5th April 1916 – 12th June 2003)

Michael Fassbender (born 2nd April 1977)

Duncan James (born 7th April 1978)

Marlon Brando (3rd April 1924 – 1st July 2004)

Miguel Bosé (born 3rd April 1956)

Anthony Perkins (4th April 1932 – 12th September 1992)

John Schneider (born 8th April 1960)

[not-so-] Li'l Nas X (born 9th April 1999)

Dennis Quaid (born 9th April 1954)

Robert Downey Jr. (born 4th April 1965)

John Gavin (8th April 1931 – 9th February 2018)

Wednesday, 7 April 2021

What about elephants?

We're not exactly in Yip Harburg territory here...

Music fan? Ever listened to the lyrics of a song you love and thought ‘wait – what the f**k’? These songs are, on close attention, completely deranged:

Yellow by Coldplay

"I swam across / I jumped across for you / What a thing to do / ’Cause you were all yellow"

Yellow is a hard colour to sell in a love song, associated as it is with piss. Chris Martin gets off to an okay start, saying that stars are yellow, which kind of, and that the song is called Yellow which is tautalogical but accurate. But when he starts hinting his lover might possibly have jaundice, that’s weird.

Earth Song by Michael Jackson

"What about elephants? / Have we lost their trust?"

Lost their trust? Did Jacko borrow a fiver from a pachyderm and not pay it back? In the wider context of a song about perpetual human suffering and a ravaged earth bringing up one specific animal and questioning whether it would still vouch for us is mental even for him.

Buck Rogers by Feeder

"We’ll start over again, / Grow ourselves new skin / Get a house in Devon, / Drink cider from a lemon / But I don’t wanna talk about it anymore"

The lyric that makes most sense is not wanting to talk about it any more, because it’s incomprehensible. Why would you put an apple-based drink in a lemon? Literally any county/food combination would fit better. ‘Get a house in Surrey, drink cider with a curry’. There, you guitar-thrashing muppets.

Happy by Pharrell Williams

"Because I’m happy / Clap along if you feel like a room without a roof"

Having already claimed to be like a "hot-air balloon that could go to space", which is a "no", because of "physics", Pharrell goes on to assert that a roofless room is his happy place. Really? A room where the rain comes in? Where the sun beats down? A room that quite frankly isn’t much of a room at all? And you expect us to clap along?

Stayin’ Alive by The Bee Gees

"Well, you can tell by the way I use my walk / I’m a woman’s man, no time to talk"

Coked-up helium-voiced nonsense. If some twat with a stupid walk asked if you could tell it meant he was a ‘woman’s man’, you’d honestly be left wanting for any possible reply.

Human by The Killers

"Are we human? / Or are we dancer?"

Repeat offenders, because "open up my eager eyes / I’m Mr Brightside" means bugger all when you think about it, this lyric is not only lunatic babbling but ungrammatical. We are human. We are not ‘dancer’. Glad that’s settled.

The Daily Mash

Of course.

I'd humbly add to this list the following embarrassments:

You Gotta Be by Des'ree

“I don’t want to see a ghost/It’s the sight that I fear most/I’d rather have a piece of toast/Watch the evening news”

Rhythm Is A Dancer by Snap

“I’m as serious as cancer when I say rhythm is a dancer”

That Was Then But This Is Now by ABC

“More sacrifices than an Aztec priest/Standing here straining at that leash/All fall down/Can’t complain, mustn’t grumble/Help yourself to another piece of apple crumble!”

New Moon on Monday by DuranDuran

"Shake up the picture the lizard mixture/With your dance on the eventide/You got me coming up with answers/All of which I deny"

Your Song by Elton John

"If I was a sculptor/But then again, no/Or a man who makes potions in a travelling show"
Nonsense, each and every one...

Now what are your suggestions, dear reader?

Tuesday, 6 April 2021

Something in my heart told me I must have you

I am still clinging onto the "attempted-meme-that-no-one-actually-bothered-much-about" that Ms Scarlet started then abandoned a while ago - #adecadeago - and so "here's one I made earlier".

Ten years ago on this date, to be precise:

"There’s only 110 pounds of Frank, but there’s ten pounds of cock!" - Ava Gardner

From the BBC today:
An original version of 1951 novel From Here to Eternity is to be reissued digitally, with previously censored references to homosexuality restored. The uncensored version will be made available online from 10 May.

It will include a scene in which Private Angelo Maggio - the character played by singer Frank Sinatra in the film - reveals he is paid to have oral sex with another man.
I thought this appropriate in the circumstances...

Strangers in the night exchanging glances
Wond'ring in the night
What were the chances we'd be sharing love
Before the night was through.

Something in your eyes was so inviting,
Something in your smile was so exciting,
Something in my heart,
Told me I must have you.

Strangers in the night, two lonely people
We were strangers in the night
Up to the moment
When we said our first hello.
Little did we know
Love was just a glance away,
A warm embracing dance away and -

Ever since that night we've been together.
Lovers at first sight, in love forever.
It turned out so right,
For strangers in the night.

Did it ever get published? Did anyone ever read it?

Questions, questions...

Monday, 5 April 2021

How could I ever refuse; I feel like I win when I lose

For a change, I am "not bovvered" that it's Monday again, as I am off for another week! Unfortunately, it's getting a bit nippy out there - just the other day I was in the garden with my top off; now, despite some glorious sunshine I think a comfy fleece may be in order.

Hey ho.

Last Friday, the lovely Miss Keren Woodward of Bananarama turned - gulp! - 60 years old! Today it's Miss Agnetha Fältskog's birthday - so, on this Tacky Music Monday, let's have a little combined celebration/wake-up call, as one beloved diva pays homage to the other...

Have a good week, dear reader.

Sunday, 4 April 2021

Avant-garde, never fade

Easter. If the shops weren't still closed thanks to the continued lockdown, they'd be shut anyway today. And it's getting colder again, so the garden's a less-than-enticing prospect.

There's nothing for it, but to entertain ourselves - how about a little round-up of some of the "newer" music that has caught my ear of late? That'll do nicely...

First up a little apéritif courtesy of Mr Boy George! He was there. Where were you?

Here's someone from RuPaul's Drag Queen UK [I wouldn't know; this bloody Drag Race thing seems to have been going for a hundred years and I have never watched it] with an "amusing" name, and a rather good choon:

Courtesy of Ana Matronic's Dance Devotion show on Radio 2 [again!] is this very weird little number from a band from... Totnes:

From the ridiculous to the sublime - an oddity from Brazil:

A cool little number from one of our favourite Ukrainian hunks, with a most magnificent video:

and finally...saving the best for last [and speaking of Drag Race, a bit of a team up between our beloved "house band" Steps and RuPaul's "right-hand woman"!

Enjoy! And, as ever, let me know your thoughts...

Saturday, 3 April 2021

I don't wanna wind up being parted, broken-hearted

She hated Easter too, it seems.

Hooray, hooray - it's Doris Day!

Without further ado, let's celebrate that much-missed angelic voice (as featured in a rather sexy extract from Strictly Ballroom):

You won't admit you love me
And so how am I ever to know?
You always tell me
Perhaps, perhaps, perhaps

A million times I've asked you,
And then I ask you over again
You only answer
Perhaps, perhaps, perhaps

If you can't make your mind up
We'll never get started
And I don't wanna wind up
Being parted, broken-hearted

So if you really love me
Say yes, but if you don't dear, confess
And please don't tell me
Perhaps, perhaps, perhaps

Perhaps, perhaps, perhaps

If you can't make your mind up
We'll never get started
And I don't wanna wind up
Being parted, broken-hearted

So if you really love me
Say yes, but if you don't dear, confess
And please don't tell me
Perhaps, perhaps, perhaps
Perhaps, perhaps, perhaps

Doris Day (born Doris Mary Anne Kappelhoff, 3rd April 1922 – 13th May 2019)

She's such a loss.

Miss Kappelhoff shares her birthday with another odd assortment of "names", including Marlon Brando, Eddie Murphy (who's 60 today!), Mistinguett, A. C. Grayling, "Fat Lady" Jennifer Paterson, Leslie Howard, Marsha Mason, the recently-departed Charlotte Coleman, Helmut Kohl, notorious lesbian diarist Anne Lister, Tony Orlando, primate concervationist Jane Goodall, Alec Baldwin, Leona Lewis, Dooley Wilson, burlesque queen Sally Rand, David Hyde Pierce, Tony Benn, Miguel Bosé, the very sexy Matthew Goode, and - erm - Nigel Farage...

Friday, 2 April 2021

Got a feeling that I will be leavin'

click to embiggen

Oh, dear - shock news has reached us of the unexpected death of one of the great "Queens of Disco", M. Patrick Juvet, aged just 70!

Without further ado, let' pay the man due homage - and Thank Disco it's (Good) Friday!

RIP, Patrick Juvet (21st August 1950 – 1st April 2021)
[Click M. Juvet's name in the labels below for more...]

Greetings of the season...

It's traditional.

Happy Easter.

Thursday, 1 April 2021

Bathe in the aroma of pork, garlic and tomato

It's that time of year again - April Fools' Day! And here are a few of the best...

The Pizza Express pizza-patterned umbrella hat!

The Teletubbies launched their own cryptocurrency - TubbyCoin “BigHugs!” Tokens!

The grass in Centre Court has been painted purple in celebration of Wimbledon's partnership with Robinsons new blackcurrant squash!

Walkers Crisps announced the launch of Chocolate Wotsits - which come in two versions, White Chocolate and Milk Chocolate!

Frankie & Benny's limited edition ‘Meatball Bath Bomb’ "that lets you bathe in the aroma of pork, garlic and tomato as you submerge it under the water"!

Birds Eye teamed up with Morphy Richards to launch the 'Potato Waffles Only Toaster’!

And finally...

...York Dungeons offered a "Rapid Witch Test"!

All these and more here...

Wednesday, 31 March 2021

Spiteful girl, hateful boy

click to embiggen

Timeslip moment again...

...and yes, we've fallen through the void and landed in the heady (and distant), gender-bending, recession-hit world of my coming-of-age year again.

In the news in late March/early April 1981: an assassination attempt on U.S. President Ronald Reagan by John Hinckley (who said he did it to impress his fantasy love Jody Foster); the Social Democratic Party (SDP) was launched by four notable defectors from the Labour Party, Shirley Williams, Bill Rodgers, Roy Jenkins and David Owen; the first London Marathon was held; and Great Train Robber Ronnie Biggs was rescued after his kidnapping in Brazil. In our cinemas: Tess; Superman II; and Chariots of Fire had its premiere. On telly: Ronnie Corbett in Sorry!; the final episode of Robin's Nest; and Tom Baker left Doctor Who after seven years and was replaced by Peter Davison.

And in our charts this week forty years ago? Shaky (Shakin' Stevens) was celebrating week two of his first #1 hit This Ole House, unfortunately holding off Kim Wilde from her rightful place at the top. Also present and correct were Bucks Fizz (who were about to win the Eurovision Song Contest, held on 4th April), Stevie Wonder, Toyah, Roxy Music, Landscape (Einstein a Go-Go), Coast to Coast, Lynx and - erm - folk singer Tony Capstick with his novelty hit Capstick Comes Home, a nostalgic narrated tale over the brass band music from the Hovis bread advert (Sibelius New World Symphony). It was crap, and he was never heard of again.

Never mind all that, hovering just outside the Top Ten (and never destined to go any further, more's the pity), there was this slice of New Romantic genius!

My painted face
Is chipped and cracked
My mind seems
To fade too fast
Clutching straws
Sinking slow
Nothing less, nothing less

A puppet's motions
Controlled by a string
By a stranger
I've never met
A nod of the head
And a pull of the thread
I can't say no, can't say no

When a child throws out a toy
When I was new you wanted me
Now I'm old you no longer see

When a child throws out a toy
Spiteful girl
Hateful boy
When a child throws out a toy

I'm all dressed up
And nowhere to go
On a music box
That never stops
I'll dance for you
If you want me to
Move in time, move in time

A wooden head
And a broken heart
Used, abused
And torn apart
I gave you my best
And you gave me the rest
It's time to die, time to die

When a child throws out a toy
When I was new you wanted me
Now I'm old you no longer see

When a child throws out a toy
Spiteful girl
Hateful boy
When a child throws out a toy

When a child throws out a toy
When I was new you wanted me
Now I'm old you no longer see

When a child throws out a toy
Spiteful girl
Hateful boy
When a child throws out a toy

I loved that song sooooo much!

I do hope Steve Strange is lording it up in his rightful place - on the door at Fabulon, keeping the hoi-polloi out...

Tuesday, 30 March 2021

Excuse me...'s been a busy day again in the garden!

Monday, 29 March 2021

He could bonsai my bush any day

Meet Jakob, our new Under-Gardener

Been busy again in the extensive gardens - and on such a warm sunny day, who could blame us if our tops just fell off..? [Of course, Jakob with his top off looks infinitely better than my flabby carcass, needless to say.]

In fact, all this drooling pottering has been such a distraction, I almost forgot it was a Tacky Music Monday!

Let's make up for that, shall we, with a double-dose of - ahem - talented artistes whose speciality is the dance style known as ParaPara, that was all the rage in Japan for several years recently...

[NB I have discovered that the inscrutable gnomes behind each of these videos has removed the "play embedded" function, so you'll need to click through to YouTube to - ahem - enjoy them.]

Have a good week, dear reader.

Sunday, 28 March 2021

Bulging professionals

It's my favourite time of the year...

So British Summer Time is officially upon us! Doesn't feel much like it, with the fierce gusts of wind at the moment - but I've been busy in the extensive gardens here at Dolores Delargo Towers this weekend [and am likely to be doing so for the whole fortnight of my leave], lifting and dividing herbaceous plants, playing "hunt-the-bloody-sycamore-seedlings" [they're everywhere; bastard weeds!] and generally pottering. We are forecast a mini-heatwave this week, so there will be a chance to sit back and enjoy it all with a glass or two of booze...

Speaking of such things, how about another cocktail-bar musical moment courtesy of the magnificent Soft Tempo Lounge?

This time however, rather than wallowing in the fabulous lives of impossibly glamorous people the action is all courtesy of what was, for me as a hormonal closeted teen, the most homoerotic cop series on late '70s/early '80s telly...

click to embiggen

...The Professionals!

[Music: The Zack Laurence Orchestra - Stiletto]

Saturday, 27 March 2021

Totty of the Season

Warren Beatty (born 30th March 1937)

Damon Albarn (born 23rd March 1968)

Richard Chamberlain (born 31st March 1934) - more here

Michael York (born 27th March 1942) - more here and here

It's the centenary of the birth of Dirk Bogarde on 28th March 1921 - more Dirk here

Paul Mercurio (born 31st March 1963) - more here

Billy MacKenzie (27th March 1957 – 22nd January 1997) - more here

Steve McQueen (24th March 1930 – 7th November 1980) - more here

Ewan McGregor, who is 50 years old on 31st March – much more here

Yesterday, it was all about the girls. Today the spotlight's on the boys!

Take a ticket and wait your turn.

Friday, 26 March 2021

And there's this magic in the air

At bleedin' last! Gawd, this week has dragged - now the light at the end of the tunnel is getting brighter. Once this day in work is over, I won't be hunching over the teeny work laptop for the next sixteen days. Hurrah! And this weekend, the clocks go forward so all the evenings will be longer... Double hurrah!

So much cause for celebration - and to add to the party mood, it's also Miss Cathy Dennis's birthday!

She's a devilishly-talented hitmaker, that girl - among the songs she's written: Can't Get You Out of My Head and Come into My World for Kylie Minogue; Toxic for Britney Spears; Reach, Never Had a Dream Come True, Have You Ever and many more for S-Club 7; Sweet Dreams My LA Ex for Rachel Stevens; About You Now for Sugababes; I Kissed a Girl for Katy Perry; Catch You for Sophie Ellis-Bextor; and several hits for - yawn - X Factor winners.

But to get the party really started, let's whizz right back to 1989, to Miss Dennis's very first hit - and Thank Disco It's Friday!

Many happy returns, Catherine Roseanne Dennis (born 25th March 1969)

Thursday, 25 March 2021

Orgasmically happy with their new vacuum cleaner

Sick of being bombarded with information that pretends to be helpful but is utterly useless? Here are the most pointless examples.

Out for delivery
We’ve all clicked on a parcel tracking link hoping for a map of where the driver is and how long until they arrive, only to see ‘out for delivery’, which they’ve already f**king emailed us with. Maybe add some equally useful information like ‘It’s coming in a van!’.

Software update percentages
Frustratingly meaningless. It takes 20 seconds to reach 80 per cent, then another 10 minutes to get to 100 per cent. Or much, much longer if you’re keen to play an exciting new game or use your computer. Replace it with a spinning black circle and the words: ‘Nope, still not done’.

Being told ‘your call is very important to us’
No it isn’t. And you don’t even know what the call’s about. We could be the worst kind of time-wasting idiot who phones the council to complain about BBC sitcoms.

Kills up to 99.9 per cent of germs
We’re not idiots, you know. Anything that says ‘up to’ is just covering your backs legally. And what about the 0.1 per cent of germs that survive? 0.1 per cent of a billion is still a million – that’s an awful lot of germs hanging around ready to kill you when your guard’s down.

Prices on airline websites
The prices of flights with no-frills airlines bear as little relation to the truth as anything Boris Johnson says at PMQs. Once the extra costs are added, they might as well just put in random numbers.

Online reviews
Is that person who’s orgasmically happy with their new vacuum cleaner being paid to write the review, or is there just not much going on in their life? Either way it’s not much help to you. Then there are the negative reviews from dunces who can’t understand why a £159.99 laptop doesn’t work like a MacBook Pro.

The Daily Mash

Of course.

Wednesday, 24 March 2021

Number one super guy

Ah, nostalgia - it's not what it used to be.

There are two milestone birthdays that relate to my childhood memories today.

Born 120 years ago, the peculiarly named Ub Iwerks [he was of German immigrant stock] was the animator who, with Walt Disney, co-created Mickey Mouse!

I always hated that fucking mouse, so let's move on...

Far more significantly, today marks the 110th anniversary of the birth of one Joseph Barbera, another animator - but one whose creations I still look upon with deep fondness...

click to embiggen

As co-founder of the mighty Hanna-Barbera organisation, he (alongside William Hanna, with whom he had already created Tom & Jerry for MGM) gave birth to myriad classic kids' shows that preoccupied our rainy-day telly-watching, including Huckleberry Hound, Quick Draw McGraw, Yogi Bear, The Jetsons, Touché Turtle, Secret Squirrel, Snagglepuss, Captain Caveman, The Banana Splits (and its featured cartoons Arabian Knights, The Three Musketeers and Micro Ventures), The Perils of Penelope Pitstop, It's the Wolf, Help!... It's the Hair Bear Bunch!, Scooby-Doo, Where Are You!, Harlem Globetrotters, Josie and the Pussycats, and these!

Happy memories...